Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Making Macarons and serving them in Tupperware

[The awesome looking Tupperware container used in this post has been sponsored by Tupperware]

Almost every Christmas my sis and I will bake something for friends in church and also our colleagues. We thought for sometime and decided we would bake macarons! I bought an 'all about macarons' book and thought it should easy enough. Nothing that we can't reproduce at home right?

Making macarons at home was harder than we thought! But in the end, after around 6 or 7 failed experiments, we kind of succeeded. Since we finally got some decent ones, we made tonnes of it! A couple hundreds to give away! (Why not? Since we already bought the ingredients!)


For some, we packed some in small individual bags to be given to individuals. For the rest we brought it to parties / fellowships / outings. We can't packed them in some ugly containers. It had to be something decent and presentable. It was hard work after all.

The container of choice was the 'Tapau' set from Tupperware. It goes so well doesn't it?
We brought them to the venue and just leaving it on the table makes it so inviting!


Macarons served in a Tupperware Container

Don't you think it looks lovely?

For the successful batches, we had different types of fillings. Some had ganache made from recipes pulled from the internet. When we ran out of it and was lazy to make more, we used peanut butter!

We started with Adam's 100% natural peanut butter. It's our family's most loved brand of peanut butter. It's only peanuts and unsalted too!

Geek speak: Next time, you go shopping for peanut butter, take a look at the ingredients, many brands have ingredients that you can't pronounce. Adam's just peanuts!

We ran out of Adam's at 12 midnight and since Cold Storage at King Albert Park opens 24 hours, I went there to get more. Oh no! There were out of stock! I got the other brands and a bottle of Goober Grape and Peanut butter too.


Macarons on my beautiful yellow Tupperware

The version above was the Goober Grape and Peanut Butter version. After trying so many types of filling. The easiest and tastiest was with Adam's 100% natural peanut butter. It seemed to go very well with the sweet chocolate meringue shells.

One day we will experiment and make the famous 'pandan and gula java' filling for our macarons!

Geek Speak: That filling by the way is Justin Quek's famous macarons. 



Ground Almond from California, bought from ToTT

If I say making it is easy, I would be lying. To make the shells, you would need lots of icing sugar, castor sugar, egg whites, chocolate powder and ground almond. The ground almond that we used was from ToTT. It's a stone throw away from our place.

Geek speak: Be careful when you go there! ToTT's like an Ikea of kitchen ware!  You might want to buy up the whole store!

We tried a few recipes. The first recipe we tried was from this book called "irresistable macaroons".

Geek Speak: Macarons or Macaroons, the book and magazine from UK spells it as macaroons. US and Singapore magazines spell it as Macarons. Ya, some say Macaroons is another thing. Don't argue. I have the book and magazine with me. Wikipedia is US.

For the recipe that we used, we tried the recipe from the macarons book we had. It failed miserably. Then we used a recipe published in the food magazine called "Delicious".  That recipe did not produce the "feet" on the macarons either.  These recipes required us to let the macarons 'sit' before baking. We tried sitting them for 5 mins, 15 mins, 1 hour and even 2 hours. None of them worked for us. The macarons never had the 'shell' that was suppose to form. I guess if your kitchen has no air-conditioning, it will be too humid for it to dry and form a crust.



Pink Macarons (this batch failed too)

These pink ones were made using recipe from the "macarons" book. Tried a few times and method with the recipe. It does not work. The outcome is so bad, I am not showing it here.

Geek Speak: We tried using greeseproof paper. It does not work as well. We read Silpat works best for prefect smooth bottom. I have 2 silpats at home, but I am not cutting them to fit into my baking tray!



Green Macarons (this batch failed)

These green ones were from the "Delicious" magazine UK recipe. It came out OK, but no "feet" came out. We tried it a few times.

Geek Speak: For this batch, we used  Non Stick Baking Sheet by Tefbake that we got from UK. Actually they were made in Ireland. It seems to give the best results for flat smooth surface.


Chocolate Macarons ready for the oven

Finally, we tried the recipe from David Lebovitz (Click here for his recipe). We modified the recipe a little, we used the fair-trade drinking chocolate from UK. As drinking chocolates have sugar, we used less sugar for the recipe. Instead of the 65 grams of granulated sugar, we used 50 grams.

Geek Speak: This batch, we used baking sheets by wiltshire. We saw it at the Robinsons sale and got them 20% off. Original price, $13.90. With the sale you get 20% off, with Robinsons Card, another 5% when your bill comes. ;-) These sheets do not work as well as the Tefbake ones though. But works better than greaseproof paper.


The recipe requires 160C for 16 minutes

David's recipe says 180C. But we tried a few batches with 180C and it the shell cracks. We finally settled for 160C and it comes out really well. We baked it for 16 or 17 minutes. Less than that, the centre will not be cooked.


Macarons in the baking...

We were monitoring the macarons as it cooks. Look! Feet!


Macarons has legs!

Ah.. Macarons!
After cooling, take two pieces and put in the fillings! Then eat!


Macarons as Christmas gifts

Packing them in origami boxes and clear plastic for Christmas Eve presents.


Macarons on my beautiful yellow Tupperware

For the rest meant for big groups, we put them in the beautiful 'tapau' set by Tupperware.  We brought it to the various Christmas parties and church fellowships we went to. Everyone loved the macarons. Some seem to love the Tupperware more than the macarons! 

Other than using it for packing. You can use the Tupperware to measure the ingredients too. Put the Tupperware on the scale and reset it to zero. Measure the ingredients in the containers and you save on washing! Since this 'tapau' set comes with 3 containers, you can sieve the ingredients into the deeper ones too. A set of Tupperware does so many things eh?

If you want to find out more about Tupperware, you can visit: www.tupperware.com.sg

There are also a Tupperware Brands Business Centre near you. Call these numbers if you want to find out more about Tupperware.  Bedok 9823 7122  | Bukit Batok 9368 5252 | City, Maxwell Road 9842 0690 | Jurong East 9617 2683 | Tampines 6789 8133 | Toa Payoh 9633 5008 | Woodlands 9271 1406 | Yishun 9781 6521


Hope you enjoyed this post.

[This post has been sponsored by Tupperware, but the baking experience are all my own]



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21 comments:

ivan said...

Not to be pedantic, but if this post was sponsored by Tupperware, I'm not sure you can say that the container of choice is Tupperware since, as it were, you don't have a choice?

Anonymous said...

@ivan I see it as keropokman's way of "transportation" for the macarons to the various parties.

It looks pretty in there! That's an idea.

Meg in Nelson said...

How did you get the sizes and the shapes of the shells so uniform?????

Life for Beginners said...

"...many brands have ingredients that you can't pronounce. Adam's just peanuts!"

Haha, I love that. Brilliant tagline. And I love unsalted, all-natural, peanuts-only peanut butter too. An acquired taste for some though. :)

Anonymous said...

wow pretty feet & shinny surface..!
bravos..!!

Snoopy

maameemoomoo said...

Congrats!!! Really beautiful feet ah!

The secret key ingredient is perseverance!

Okie, i'm really all inspired already. Gonna try out David's recipe!!

Camemberu said...

Your macarons are so pretty!!! Yes, David Lebovitz's recipe seems to be quite good, I read.

Very clever way of integrating Tupperware into the post! The container size is just right for macarons too!

Cuisine Paradise said...

Wow.. lovely macarons that you have. Really admire your determination in making those pretty babies :) Love the way you present them too. I shall try the David Lebovitz's recipe recommend by you too :p

Katherine said...

Hey keropokman!

beautiful macarons!! wondering if you can share with me where it Totts and how to get there? I think I stay near your area :)

The Hungry Cow said...

Wow! Nice looking macarons! I tried Thomas Keller's recipe twice and failed miserably. Maybe it's time for another shot...this time using David's recipe.

Keropok Man said...

@ivan :-p

@anon thanks for the answer, whoever u are :-)

@meg the ones that are not nice, goes into the stomach! oh the calories!

@LFB the unadulterated peanut butter, once u have it, the rest are just 'blah'!

Keropok Man said...

@snoopy yeah, after so many tries, the feet finally came out!

@maameemoomoo Did David's recipe work for u?

@camemberu ya, and Dave's ice cream recipes are easy too!

@cuisine paradise u should try!! and serve in tupperware too! :-p

Keropok Man said...

@Katherine ToTT is at 896 Dunearn Road. It's at the Sime Darby building. For maps etc you can visit www.tottstore.com :-)

@hungrycow David's recipe is easier. no need to wait for crust to form then bake. saves time too!

piracer said...

some questions, what kind of oven do you have, is it convection or conventional? Also, which eggs did you buy? I've been trying to figure out what '2 large eggs' are since other recipes they use weights. Also is your kitchen particularly dry or air-conditioned? Did you have to sift your almond and icing sugar a lot?
Finally, do you think its better to make them at the end of the year then to do them now?

I was able to make macaro(o)ns twice when I was in the US recently very happily, but the recipe didn't work here but im not sure if its due to my oven or humidity or temperature or the macaron gods who were offended.
Thanks

Keropok Man said...

Hi Piracer:
Then when I made this, we were using a 4 in 1 kind of oven, we used the Convection mode.

We bought eggs, the local ones. The 55 grams local eggs. We made sure they were not refrigerated though.

The kitchen was not air-conditioned. Our first few experiments we though the kitchen was too humid, then we changed to this recipe which did not require sitting, so it worked.

We sifted the almond and icing sugar once only. to make sure there was no lumps.

The whole process, has to be done very quickly. It might be the stirring of the whisked egg whites and mixture, do it as quickly and few folds, it seemed to work better that way.

Hope that helps.

piracer said...

Hi thanks for the reply, specifically, what brand of eggs did you use? I noticed some of them vary in weight sizes and i think 5+ grams can really mess with the recipie. Also, on your oven, what setting did you use? Was it with the fan on? Or just with the top and bottom heat?

Keropok Man said...

Hi Piracer

You can scroll up and see the photo of my oven.

I have two ovens now and the one that we used then, we had it set at 160C, that seems to be the best setting for our batch of ingredients.

No fan on. It was top and bottom heat. The oven allows us to put in 2 trays at at time, but we realise that when we do that, 1 tray gets burnt and the macarons cracks. So, we just bake 1 tray at a time, and let the other tray rest on the dining table. At least there was no wastage.

I think our eggs was Seng Choon eggs. Nothing really fancy. We thought of buying those extra large eggs, but though the normal eggs will be better.

We are just doing it for hobby, so we can't bake huge batch like the professionals. But it was really satisfying when it finally works :-)

piracer said...

Hi again!

Success finally! See its weird because i baked mine in the oven with the fan setting on and i wonder if its the same with just the two top and bottom heat units. I also baked them at about 155 although its not an electronic read out so i cant confirm this. But thanks for the post, after so many attempts we're finally here!

Have you tried what their like without the cocoa powder though? As in plain? Can you just omit it and put in some other coloring (or not at all) as i imagine the 25g of cocoa powder will greatly affect the consistency of the macaron batter.

Keropok Man said...

Piracer,

Congrats! It's so satisfying that it finally works ya?

We tried using liquid colouring, but it did not work out. Got to use the dry or paste colouring. That would probably work. We tried green and pink liquid colouring, it failed miserably. haha

Choc seems to be the best for us so far ;-)

ray-cheyl said...

thanks for making this post! as a singaporean in this humid weather ive been having problems too getting feet on my macarons.. finally after waiting till about midnight for crusts to form i realised i probably need air conditioning to form such crusts and it was too late. i will be sure to try the other recipe you have mentioned, though!

Keropok Man said...

Hi ray-cheyl,

Yes, how we wish we could have air-con in our kitchens! ;-)

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